NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- U.S. stock futures were trimming gains made earlier Thursday, a day after the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 broke their five-day streak of record highs, as initial jobless claims last week increased slightly.
Jobless claims rose to 290,000, the highest since mid-September, compared to the 280,000 expected by economists. Though only a week-by-week measure, the data contrasts with recent releases which showed a tightening job market.
Dow futures added 0.13%, S&P futures climbed 0.11%, and Nasdaq futures popped 0.2%.
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European markets were moving cautiously higher after tumbling more than 1% on Wednesday after the Bank of England cut growth forecasts through to 2016. Leading stocks higher, Merck KGaA (MKGAY) upped its full-year sales guidance while Paris-based Alstom (ALSMY) increased its share buyback program.
Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) agreed to buy Procter & Gamble's (PG) Duracell battery business in a deal that includes $1.7 billion in cash and about $4.7 billion in P&G stock currently held by the billionaire investor's holding company.
Walmart (WMT) shares were up by 2% after the retailer beat analysts' estimates in its third quarter and raised its earnings guidance for the full year.
Things weren't so bright at Kohl's (KSS) which reported comparable-store sales down 1.8% in its quarter. Shares were falling 2.4% in premarket trading.